On March 17, Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR) introduced S.1., the For the People Act. Senators Schatz and Hirono have signed on as co-sponsors. Senator Klobuchar’s Rules and Administration Committee has scheduled the first hearing for March 24 at 10AM ET.
This is a sweeping package of comprehensive reforms that would end special interest corruption of our politics and make government work for the people. It’s
The introduction comes as Republican lawmakers in 43 states continue to use unfounded election conspiracies regarding the 2020 presidential election to restrict Americans’ access to the ballot box—with a disproportionate impact on Black and Brown Americans. According to a recent report from the Brennan Center, at least 253 bills to restrict voting have been introduced around the country.
What will the For the People Act do?
Make it Easier, Not Harder, To Vote
- Improve Access and Secure Voting
- Promote Integrity – Prohibit voter roll purges like those seen in Ohio, Georgia and elsewhere. Ensure that discriminatory voter ID laws do not prevent Americans citizens from exercising their rights.
- Bolster Election Security – Ensures that American elections are decided by American voters without interference by foreign adversaries.
End The Dominance of Big Money In Politics
- Guarantee Disclosure of donors
- Empower Citizens – Build campaign finance system to increase the power of small donors, reaffirm Congress’s authority to regulate money in politics, and push back against Citizens United.
- Strengthen Oversight
- Prevent Foreign Interference
People Should Choose their Politicians, Not the Other Way Around
- End partisan gerrymandering
Ensure Public Officials Work For The Public Interest
- Fortify Ethics Laws and Slow the Revolving Door
- Impose Greater Ethics Enforcement
Links to More Detailed Info
- A section-by-section summary of the legislation is available here.
- A list of organizations supporting the legislation is available. Includes letters from 190 organizations, posters, petition and more here.
- A myth-busting fact sheet about the bill and Republican narratives of “voter fraud” is available here.
- For more details, see Senator Merkley’s (D-OR) document: “Blueprint For Our ‘We The People’ Democracy” report, which detailed the importance of ending dark money in politics, tackling gerrymandering, protecting and expanding Americans’ right to vote, and ensuring equal representation in our government. Each of those components are included in today’s legislation. Senator Merkley has long championed reforms to unrig American democracy and is on Senator Klobuchar’s Rules Committee.
What actions can I take?
These are just samples of different options to support the bill. They will provide training for you. Search the internet for other options.
- Contact Friends and Family – Share the above information with your contacts across the country and ask them to share it with their peers and senators via calls and Town Hall meetings during the Senate recess (Mar 27 – Apr 11).
- Contact Senators Schatz and Hirono – Let them know that we appreciate them signing on as co-sponsors and share any personal concerns and stories concerning the voter suppression bills in other states.
- Texting – Stand up American – Help stop the wave of GOP voter suppression by pushing the Senate to pass the For the People Act! Join a shift to text voters in key states: Click Here
- Phone banking – Common Cause – Make calls to activists in key states to help pass this groundbreaking democracy bill. Click Here
- Call Senators – Indivisible – Demand they support S. 1 and S. 51 (DC Statehood), work swiftly to mark both bills up, and send them to the floor for a vote. Additionally, S. 1 and S. 51 must be passed quickly. Democratic Senators cannot let the filibuster get in the way. Click Here
- Declaration for American Democracy toolkit – Click here
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